Whether it’s to enhance the taste of every meal or to get the most nutritional value from your food, relying on whole foods is the way to go. Whole fruits and vegetables retain so much more of the vitamins and minerals our bodies require, but there is a common issue that many people express while trying to make the switch. Some people simply find it too expensive. Every piece of fruit and veg does add up, but that doesn’t mean you have to let it get out of control. Here’s how to make your whole food diet better fit your budget.
Make sure that you’re planning your meals ahead of time. By putting together several different meals that use the same ingredients, you can reduce your shopping list as well as cutting down on the waste you produce. You can also buy fruits and vegetables at a discount while helping grocers and farmers cut down on their own waste. A lot of the waste currently produced isn’t by food expiring, but by people willfully throwing out foods with visual imperfections. Ugly as they may be, discounted blemished fruit and vegetables taste just the same, and often cost much less than their more photogenic brothers and sisters.
Know what’s in season
Fruits and vegetables are seasonal. They only grow at certain times of the year in certain places. For that reason, if you pay attention to what’s in season and plan meals accordingly around them, you can get them for a lot less. They are in higher supply and don’t need to be transported as far, so they are cheaper. Paying attention to agriculture reports can help you see pricing trends, predict what products will cost more, and know how long those cost hikes and drops are going to last for. Be less picky with your choices and be willing to explore alternatives whenever your preferred fruits and vegetables aren’t as readily available. You’ll save money, broaden your horizons, and perhaps even find a few new favorites.
Grow your own
No matter how much garden space or time you have, everyone can grow at least a little of the food they consume. We have a whole category of gardening tips, from how to create raised beds for growing vegetables to how to better grow specific produce. Even if you don’t have tons of space for vegetables, you can grow your own herbs in pots. Not only is it much cheaper to grow your own than to buy in store, it can be healthier, too. You know whether or not any additives are in the fertilizer for instance, as well as any other modifications that might be made to store-bought fruit. Not everyone can grow 100% of their own produce, but we can all use it to reduce our costs just a little.
Living frugally with a whole food diet is far from impossible, you just have to know how to avoid spending too much. By cutting down on waste, buying smart, and growing your own, you can manage it in no time.
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